In Tokyo for New Years, at a Shinto Shrine, surrounded by celebrating Japanese and you are completely lost as to what you’re supposed to be doing.
Shinto is the indigenous religion of Japan, teaching us that every living thing has a kami, or living spirit. In Shintoism, it is totally appropriate to either make a wish or to pray silently.
Here’s how to pray at a Shinto Shrine without getting scoffed at:
Step One: Put your offering (typically monetary) into the offering box.
Step Two: Ring the bell once
Step Three: Bow Two times
Step Four: Clap twice, and reflect on your prayer or wish
Step Five: Bow once again
There you have it!
Enjoy your steaming yakisoba and piping hot sake, because the night’s gonna be a good night. Who knows, maybe we’ll even bump into each other…